Sexing up machines or machining up sex?

Sexing up machines or machining up sex?
Honey Thief by I Guyjin.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Chapter 1 of 'The Final Song' new rewrite.

Copyright © Bruce C. Lee. May 2005 & 2010

THE FINAL SONG. B. Cameron Lee


Chapter 1.

A disgraced Angel.
The first one created.
Banished from the Kingdom of Heaven.

Sent Down, so there was an Up.
Given into Darkness so Light could be so much brighter.
Made Evil so the Good would be pure.
Full of all suffering.
Unwanted by the Creator in his shiny Kingdom.
The Prince of Liars.

As a vocation it sucked but He would not quit, could not quit. God ruled and it was not allowed, not part of the job description. He had never had a holiday, ever.
Pain? Always.

In His own evil way He had honour though and stuck to the rules, which lately He had started exploring in detail. There were loopholes.
He was allowed children. He had four, never more at any one time. Begat willingly on human women, two boys and two girls. They and He together made Five, a powerfull number. In the near future they would become his Generals, riding out to command an army of discontented souls that would soon rise up and smite, such a lovely word, the Kingdom of Heaven.
Only problem was, recruitment was too damn slow.

The tall, dark figure stood motionless in the pool of shadow, under the tree where he was patiently waiting, across the avenue from Tonies Coffee Shop. Although strangely dressed for the middle of summer in a three quarter-length black coat and black wide-brimmed Stetson, none of the passersby seemed to notice the strangeness of him. He was staring off down the Boulevard, with an intensely concentrated gaze and a slight smile just twitching his thin, cruel lips. That smile did not reach the slitted, reddened eyes.

Steve grinned again, “Need a loan my friend?”
“No. I’ll be fine for now thanks but you could pay for the coffees.” Chris sighed, as he leaned backward in his seat. He could not help thinking about the predicament he was in, girlfriend gone, no job and the trusted, old car broken beyond repair. Plus the fact that he had to move out of his apartment in two weeks. Life was becoming a real bitch.
“Sure. No problem, anything to help. You’ve got it pretty rough at the moment.” Steve signaled the waiter and made scribbling motions in the air, requesting the bill.
They both sat back in the comfortable aluminium and black vinyl chairs, enjoying their coffee at Tonies. The sunlight playing through the trees of the Boulevard shone dappled light onto the white umbrella rising from the centre of the glass-topped table in front of them. Around them, fellow patrons enjoyed their lunchtime break at the other tables spread in front of the cafe, while across the road, shoppers filled the sidewalk with bright summer clothing and movement as they wandered from store to store, consuming, in the music that quietly drifted around them. The traffic was busy but relatively light, no trucks were allowed through the Boulevard during the day. The low hubbub of background noise lent a tranquil atmosphere to the scene in front of them. It was perfect, the moment and their bond of friendship.
The sound rose faintly into Chris’ conscious mind. At first, it was subliminal, then his ears registered a regular thud, thud, thud. He looked for the source and far off down the avenue, spotted a colored guy, walking along with a huge ghetto blaster perched on his shoulder. The rhythm became clearer and Chris recognized the intriguing, rhythmical, base beat of rap/hip hop music. As the colored guy drew closer, Chris was able to see that he was expensively dressed but shabby. Like the guy had been through hard times recently. His eyes had dark circles under them and a three-day growth of stubble on his face reinforced that impression. The music was quite loud now, clear enough for Chris to pick up some of the lyrics, which he found a little disturbing.

“…………Pain and fear and killin’ without license.”

As if the music had cued it, Chris’ perceptions changed. Everything slowed to a syrupy slow-motion crawl. The light through the trees dimmed. The surrounding street noise vanished into silence. Only the song remained, slowed down to such a degree that he could not understand the words.
He saw. On the wide grass verge that bordered the Boulevard, a little boy lose his bouncing ball and swimmingly career after it, running away from his mother, unwittingly dodging between two parked cars and into the traffic. Intent only on retrieving his recalcitrant toy.
He saw. The big, dark blue Chevy, swerving to miss the child, miraculously finding the only gap between the vehicles parked along the street, hit the kerb and become airborne.
He saw. In the slow motion ballet unfolding before him, the colored guy being hit and split by the flying car. The boom box was launched from his shoulder with the force of the impact, flying ever higher into the air, spinning lazily.
Then, he saw a ghostly, red-scaled hand materialize out of thin air and press the STOP button. The slowed down music stopped abruptly and the red-scaled hand took the CD from the machine and sent it spinning towards the spot where he was sitting, defying reason with the distance it traveled.
Everything returned to normal time.
There was screaming. The car crashed to the ground on its side and ground to a halt, sparks flying as tortured metal ground on concrete, people of all descriptions scattering from its path. There was an extremely loud thud, followed by a second thud as the body, bouncing of a tree, smacked into the sidewalk, limp. The boom box topped its arc then spiraled down onto the road, ending its brief aerial flight and smashing into myriad pieces. The CD finished its long, lazy flight and skittered to a halt at Chris’ feet. A moment’s stunned silence. Then people were running to the scene of the accident, the screaming resuming from somewhere. Somehow, Chris knew the colored guy was dead. He hadn’t really seen that ghostly hand materialize, had he? Mechanically, without thinking about what he was doing, he bent down and retrieved the night- black CD, slipping it into the inside breast pocket of his business suit jacket as he straightened up. It was icy cold to the touch. He shivered at the contact.

“Shee-it!” Steve was out of his seat and running towards the body on the footpath while Chris was pocketing the CD.
“Come on Chris” he yelled over his shoulder, “We have to help.”
“Same old Steve, always ready to jump in and help someone.” Chris thought to himself as he strode over to join his friend, who was trying to check for a pulse on what was definitely a body. He saw that his original estimate was accurate, this guy was definitely deceased. Dead was dead. Brains were meant to be on the inside, not scattered across the footpath from the remains of a shattered skull.
It all caught up with Chris at that moment. The first dead person he had ever seen in his life. Turning aside, he vomited violently, emptying his stomach and retching noisily again and again as his body reacted to the sight before him.
Leaning against a tree, hands on the rough bark and out of breath from vomiting, his guts still churning and with a vile taste in his mouth, Chris surveyed the scene. The big, blue Chevy lying on its side on the footpath, the front all stove in, radiator steaming, the upper front wheel still spinning tiredly with nowhere to go. Steve, up on the side of the Chevy with the passenger door open, helping the badly shaken but otherwise unharmed driver out of the car. The little boy clutching his ball, safe in his mother’s arms, crying at the shock of it all, his little face white and tear stained. The boom box in a million pieces on the road. Traffic backing up, horns honking. Confusion.
A police car arrived with its lights flashing and two uniforms got out, putting on their hats. They came over and checked the body then asked after the driver of the car, who was now standing unsteadily beside Steve. One of the officers returned to the police car to radio in for a morgue van and a tow truck before opening the boot and removing some red traffic cones. He stepped onto the road, setting out the cones to direct traffic and create a space for the morgue truck, which would shortly arrive in response to his call. After putting a black plastic sheet over the body, the other officer headed over to where Chris and Steve were standing, taking a notebook out of his pocket as he came. Shoppers, across the street, were beginning to move off, now that the excitement was over.
“Getting back to their normal lives”. Chris thought as he turned his head and forced himself to look where the body lay under its plastic sheet. His life would never be normal again. From what was left of the face, the colored guy hadn’t looked very old and the clothes he wore on his well built body, spoke of money, lots of money. Much good it would do him now. Chris felt weird, one minute the guy had been walking along the footpath and then the next minute he was dead. Probably never saw it coming. For the first time in his relatively short life, Chris considered his own mortality and shuddered at the thought of how fleeting life could be. He resolved then and there to stop pussyfooting around and grasp opportunities that came his way.
Life was meant to be lived to the full.
He immediately felt better and drawing a deep breath, let go of the tree and stood tall. He was damned if he was going to go that way, before he’d had a chance to live.
That was pretty much the end of Chris’ and Steve’s meeting that Friday. After making a statement to the police, Chris excused himself, as he had to leave to attend yet another job interview, which left Steve to do whatever it was that Steve did with his time. Funny though, Chris never mentioned anything about the CD to either Steve or the police, nor did anyone else. None of the eyewitnesses reported a flying CD or the fact that Chris had pocketed it. In fact, the instant the CD was in his pocket, Chris had also forgotten all about it.
Steve slowly wandered back to the table that they had shared until recently and sat down. His gaze was fixed on his friend’s retreating back and never left it, until Chris got into a cab. Steve then ordered another coffee and leaned back, the late July sunshine, shadow dappling the footpath and table through the trees, feeling warm and pleasant on his skin. This had been their favourite spot for meeting each other. Sitting at a table outside of Tonies Coffee Shop, the shady boulevard stretching away in both directions, drinking coffee and talking, or not. Since the redevelopment of Uptown and the construction of a flyover three blocks away, judicious planning had resulted in many streets in the area becoming pedestrian malls and retailers and shoppers had flocked to the area. Traffic had to thread around a complicated one-way system, which slowed it down. The Boulevard in front of Tonies Coffee Shop was the only through road in the area. Really, the only place this accident could have happened. The coffee arrived and Steve sat up, shivering as a chill ran down his spine. ‘Why hadn’t Chris mentioned the CD he had pocketed,’ he wondered.

The tall dark figure, still in the shadow of the tree across the road, smiled wickedly then vanished.

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